Town woman to work and camp at the Olympics

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A HARTLEPOOL housewife is set to sleep under the stars as part of her role in the forthcoming London Olympics.

Jo Grylls is preparing for her role as a Games Maker which will involve her volunteering at the Games’ Aquatic Centre and during her stint she will camp there.

The 50-year-old will stay in the low-cost alternative accommodation as part of a scheme called Camping at the Games Initiative, which provides pitches for as little as £10 per night at schools and sports grounds in London, Reading and Weymouth.

Jo said: “It’s truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I just wanted to be involved. We sit and watch the Olympics at home every four years and now we have an opportunity to be a part of it. I’ll be involved in various events at the Aquatic Centre, including swimming which is my favourite aspect of the Games.

“I think the Camping at the Games initiative is brilliant, it really helped me out as I was struggling to find affordable accommodation. It’ll be great staying with plenty of like-minded people, too. It makes use of the open spaces in and around London. It’s so affordable that it makes coming to London a real possibility for everyone.”

She added: “I’m really looking forward to it, I can’t wait to live the Olympic experience. There’s always a real buzz about the Olympics in the UK, but actually being in the host city during the Games will be extra-special.”

Leaders of the Camping at the Games scheme wanted to create affordable alternative accommodation for Games Makers like Jo, ticket holders and young families – with children being able to stay for just £5 and adults £10.

There are no unexpected costs, clean toilets, hot running showers, parking and access to a lively clubhouse is all included.

And for those visitors who do not have tickets for the Games they can also head into London to enjoy all of the cultural events that are taking place.

Rhian Evans, co-founder and director of Camping at the Games, said: “We wanted to make taking part in the Olympics affordable for everyone as this is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

“We have joined forces with local sports clubs close to Olympic and Paralympic venues who can offer their facilities and atmosphere for less than a 10th of the price to provide great value accommodation that in turn will generate valuable revenue to be reinvested into community sport.”